Class of 1968 returns to find changed campus, celebrate 50 years

On Tuesday, June 5, alumni from the class of 1968 were alumni toastwelcomed back to campus for a special day of recognition celebrating their 50th reunion. 

This year’s Golden Jubilee carried added significance for ’68 class members, as their 50th anniversary coincides with Wayne State’s sesquicentennial. Alumni traveled across the country to take part in the day of celebration, which included a brunch, pinning ceremony and champagne toast. A highlight of the day was a bus tour of campus, showcasing the tremendous changes that have taken place over the years.

“I just can’t believe how much campus has changed,” said Jasper Ficara ’68, a graduate of the College of Engineering. “It’s really something special.”

Alumni also had a chance to hear from select students from the classes of 2017 and 2018, who were in attendance to receive the Alumni Association’s David D. Henry and Howard R. Donnelly awards. 

awardsThe awards are given each year to recent graduates who have made outstanding contributions to the university in the areas of leadership and service while maintaining high academic standing. The Donnelly Award was established in 1927 to recognize the longtime Wayne State supporter, and the Henry Award was established in 1948 in honor of the university’s third president. 

Alumnus Barry Becker, a longtime WSU advisor who received the Henry award in 1968, presented the honor to this year’s recipients.

“The Henry Award is a recognition that was very important to me back then and something I’m still very proud of, “said Becker. “So it’s a real honor to present the awards to these students as we celebrate our 50-year reunion during the university’s 150th anniversary.”

2018 David D. Henry Award winners:

  • Mukund Mohan ’17, a member of the Irvin D. Reid Honors College, received his bachelor’s in economics with a minor in public health.
  • Natalie Kay-Flaherty ’17 received her bachelor’s in painting with a minor in psychology from the College of Fine, Performing and Communication Arts.

2018 Howard A. Donnelly Award winners:

  • Mahmoud Hijazi ’18, received his bachelor’s in biological sciences from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
  • Sabrina Pakula ’18, received her bachelor’s in biomedical engineering from the College of Engineering.

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